The WordPress Twitter Integration is Broken

At the end of April, WordPress announced that due to the changes in Twitter’s API policies and prices, they can no longer automatically tweet out links to our blog posts. Admittedly, I think the majority sentiment these days is that Twitter is a slow-motion train wreck, but it somehow still seems to be the biggest social media platform for readers and writers.

My first thought was that I would have to start manually tweeting my posts, but honestly, I don’t know if I’m going to bother. With my limited following (and limited effort) I really don’t get much engagement from Twitter. It was just the ease of use that allowed me to keep the @DeferredWords account active.

If you have a Twitter integration that’s no longer integrating for your blog, I think the best bet is probably to get one of the many browser plugins that let you click to tweet links. That way you can still tweet out your posts with relative ease. Unfortunately, it’s a manual process now, which means it doesn’t work with scheduled posts. I already have a lot of rigamarole around posting Razor Mountain chapters to multiple services, so I don’t really want to add yet more steps.

At this point, I’m ready for Twitter to die. I hear that maybe BlueSky is the app that will actually get everyone to jump ship, but I’ll believe it when I see it. They said that about Mastodon and three or four other Twitter clones. Mastodon is still around and still sort-of, kind-of, not really active. All the other services are at least twice as dead.

Mostly I’m just trying to spend less time on Twitter, which I suppose is a good thing.

State of the Blog — February 2023

It’s that time again. Since I started this blog, I’ve done a “State of the Blog” post every six months. This is the fifth such post.

One of the key tenets of this blog is an open writing process. I’ve brought that to my serial novel, Razor Mountain, with my development journals, and I bring it to the blogging process with these posts. While the Razor Mountain development journals focus mostly on fiction writing, these posts are about blogging in general.

Previous Posts


Let’s start with the numbers:

  • Years blogging: 2.5
  • Total Posts: ~315
  • Total Followers: 128
  • Monthly views: 530 (average over last 3 months)

Search vs. Direct Traffic

The split between search traffic and direct traffic has stayed roughly the same in the past few months. Something like 75% of the traffic I get is from search, with one hero post and a handful of other mid-ranked posts capturing most of those views. The remaining 25% looks like it’s mostly from regular readers, and they’re mostly reading my new posts each week. As you’d expect, comments and likes come mostly from the regulars, while views are mostly the drive-by-searchers.

That search engine traffic varies quite a bit from week to week and month to month, so I’m in the odd position where my stats often aren’t driven much by what I posted recently, and instead come down to how many people wandered in from Google.

Slower Growth?

As I looked back at previous six-month windows, I saw fairly consistent growth in numbers. Usually, my views would just about double over the course of six months. The past six months were the first time where that wasn’t really the case. On average, those stats still went up, but not at that exponential rate.

Complicating the issue is that the numbers didn’t show a consistent trend. As you can see from the graph, there were a couple of fairly low months and a very high month. Turns out a lot of people have extra time to catch up on their blogs in the last two weeks of December.

It will be interesting to see what the next six months look like. This just isn’t a ton of data points to infer much from. I’m not really looking to change what I do based on these numbers—I won’t be doing a bunch of SEO stuff or using more clickbait-y titles. I’d love to see the blog keep growing, but if it does it will be because I keep posting what I enjoy posting, and people find it and like it too.

Approaching the End of Razor Mountain

There are ten chapters left in Razor Mountain. That number may change a little as I work through Act III, but that’s still well over 2/3 done. Plus, as an experiment, I already wrote a first draft of the last chapter at the start of the book. So as long as I can keep up my current pace, I should have all my chapters done before my next State of the Blog post.

I’ve been thinking about what happens next. First, I know I’m going to take a break from the book to get a little distance. Then I’ll be rereading and digging into whole-book edits and polish. I worked extra hard on the front-end to make these episodes as good as they could be when they are released, but I know that there will be a lot of opportunities to go back and further improve and tighten the story.

The bigger long-term question is what I want Razor Mountain to be. Right now, it lives on the blog, and on Wattpad and Tapas. I wanted this to be an open experiment, and I’m very happy with how it has gone. But with a rare few exceptions, traditional publishers are not interested in publishing a book that is already out in the world. I may decide to explore self-publishing, just in case there are folks out there who would be willing to throw a few bucks my way for a copy of the final book.

What Lies Beyond

Razor Mountain has been an integral part of my blog almost since its inception. My posting schedule changed when I went from pre-production to actually posting chapters, and it will probably change again when I get into editing. Then, at some point, I’m going to be done with the book, and there will be a big gap to fill in the posting schedule.

I have a few ideas of what I would like to work on next. I would love to spend at least a few months writing nothing but short stories and really grinding submissions to publishers. I also have dreams of writing a TTRPG campaign setting—I know there is a decent chunk of my regulars who are into that sort of thing, and I think it would bring in some new readership as well. I’ve been kicking around ideas for a setting for years, so it would be great to get it out of my head and onto paper.

I hear that people love maps…

Whichever project I choose to do next, it’s very likely that I will end up posting less frequently. I love the blog, and it has been very satisfying to get to a point where I put out at least three posts most weeks, but I also want to produce more fiction and other work that I won’t end up posting to the blog. Since there are only so many words I can produce in a given week, that necessarily means I will end up stealing time from the blog for other projects.

That’s okay. In some ways, I feel like the blog has grown up. It’s no longer a baby blog where I post my thoughts into the void. I have regular readers that I recognize, and writing and blogging friends that I occasionally trade comments with. I don’t want to stop blogging, but I feel like the blog can continue to grow and thrive with a little less care and feeding than I’ve been putting into it so far.

See You Next Time

That’s it for this time. I’ll see you in another six months for the three-year blogoversary!

My Writing Process — 2022

One of the goals of Words Deferred has always been to open up my writing process for everyone to see. I don’t claim to have the perfect process, and I think the best way to write will ultimately be different for each writer. However, there’s surprisingly little talk among writers about the day-to-day details of what writing is like, and I want to do my small part to change that.

As the end of the year approaches, I thought it would be interesting to look at the writing I’m doing and the tools I’m using in 2022. Then I can look back on this next year and see how things have changed, or if they’ve stayed the same.


Writers are known for carrying little notebooks and jotting down ideas whenever and wherever they appear. In the past, I’ve carried pocket-sized notebooks, but I went entirely digital several years ago.

My digital notebook of choice is Microsoft OneNote. I have separate tabs for general brainstorms and ideas, short stories, novels, blog posts, lists of books I might eventually read, and more. When I need to take notes on the go, I just jot them down on my phone. OneNote synchronizes automatically between phone and laptop, with only occasional weird formatting issues.

My OneNote. There are a lot of pages hidden under those headings…

Novel Writing

For novels, when I’m ready to go beyond the idea-gathering stage, I move all my notes from OneNote into Scrivener.

As far as I am concerned, Scrivener is the best novel-writing application out there. Where it really shines is in the way it lets me split a big project into nested parts. I split Razor Mountain into folders for each act, then split out each chapter into its own document under those folders. I have separate sections for major characters, locations and other research notes.

With a click of a button, I can look at the chapter summaries on a cork-board view, and I can drag-and-drop chapters in the document tree to rearrange them, something that has been really convenient as I’ve merged and moved chapters in Act II. Scrivener also has built-in support for “snapshots,” which I use to save each revision of each chapter. I typically save at least a rough draft, a second draft after some editing, and a third draft once I’ve gotten reader feedback.

To ensure that my work is fully backed up, I save my Scrivener files to Dropbox, which copies them across my computers and my phone for safe-keeping. I do have the mobile version of Scrivener, but I almost never use it. I love taking notes on my phone, but I do not enjoy long-form writing on that tiny keyboard.

Serial Publishing

I’m publishing Razor Mountain as a serial in three places: here on the blog, on Wattpad, and on Tapas. I chose to do this so that I could get a feel for the different platforms, and to try to increase the visibility. However, I haven’t done much to promote the Tapas or Wattpad versions, so pretty much all of my regular readership is on WordPress. I keep telling myself that I’ll eventually put some love into Tapas and Wattpad, and that may actually happen at some point. Either way, I’ll continue on all three until Razor Mountain is finished.

Because I’m posting to three platforms, my process for this is a little bit insane. It goes something like:

  1. Write the first draft and first round of edits in Scrivener.
  2. Copy it to Google Docs for easy beta reader feedback. Fix the formatting that doesn’t transfer nicely.
  3. Make changes based on feedback in Scrivener, and decide how to split the chapter into multiple posts.
  4. Copy it to a OneNote template with the brief description at the top and links to previous/home/next at the bottom.
  5. Copy from OneNote to WordPress. Schedule the posts.
  6. Copy from OneNote to Wattpad. Fix all the formatting that doesn’t transfer nicely. (Wattpad has no way to schedule posts.)
  7. Copy from OneNote to Tapas. Fix the formatting that doesn’t transfer nicely. Schedule the posts.
  8. On the scheduled day, chapter parts automatically post to WordPress and Tapas.
  9. I have to manually post the saved draft to Wattpad. I also have to update the previous/next links in the WordPress post, and I need to add links to the Razor Mountain home page. Depending on how busy I am, I sometimes forget to do these things, and I typically don’t catch it until I start posting the next chapter.

Some of this complexity comes from posting in three places, each with their own idiosyncrasies. It’s obnoxious how often copy/pasting between tools and websites causes the formatting to be lost. It’s doubly obnoxious that Wattpad doesn’t let me schedule posts.

I suspect there is probably a way to add WordPress links (previous/next and home page) that point to a scheduled post and only work once the post is “live.” I haven’t spent the time to figure it out though.

Short Stories

The majority of my writing time this year went toward Razor Mountain and the blog, but I have managed to sneak in a few short stories.

For microfiction, drabbles, and flash fiction, I often just work in OneNote. Unlike novel writing, I sometimes do work on short short stories on my phone, and I typically do not need organizing features or formatting more complex than italics and bold.

For longer stories, I usually use Microsoft Word on the laptop. Oddly, I copy to Google Docs for easy beta reader feedback, but I never really write in it. I’ve been using Word for years and I’m comfortable with it.

For all of my stories, I save everything to Dropbox to make sure it’s backed up. When it comes time to find places to submit stories, I use Duotrope.


My blogging schedule has fluctuated over time, but these days I try to post Razor Mountain chapters every other week.

Unless a chapter is around a thousand words or less, I will break it into 2-3 parts of about a thousand words each. I’ve read that 500-1000 words is the sweet spot for keeping readers’ attention for blogs, and a slim majority of my WordPress readers are on mobile, where a post of that size feels bigger on the page than it does on a full-size monitor or tablet. Tapas and Wattpad don’t have that kind of detailed dashboard for writers, but they do say that most of their readers are also on mobile.

Along with the chapters themselves, I write a development journal for each Razor Mountain chapter. Sometimes I post the chapter parts earlier in a week (e.g. Wednesday and Thursday), and the development journal on Friday. If I have three parts in a chapter or get a little behind, I will sometimes post the development journal the following Monday. I used to worry about maintaining an exact schedule, but nowadays I just aim for a schedule and adjust as needed.

I write blog posts unrelated to Razor Mountain on the “off” weeks, and sometimes for the Monday of Razor Mountain weeks as well. I’ve been blogging long enough now that I have a few ongoing series of posts, so I will often mix one of those posts with something stand-alone in a given week.

I’ve gotten in the habit of posting reblogs every other Wednesday. Writing three blog posts in a week is too much for me, and reblogs are low-effort (while hopefully still interesting content). They occasionally result in some cross-pollination with the other blog’s readership. Their main purpose is to serve as a good motivation for me to regularly read other writing blogs. I maintain a list of interesting articles and blog posts in my OneNote, and trawl through them for these reblogs.

For the header images on my posts, I use Pexels. I don’t usually do any picture editing apart from cropping. If I have a really difficult time finding an image that I’m happy with, I will occasionally check Unsplash. Both of these sites offer pictures that are free to use and do not require specific license language to be displayed.

(If you’re blogging, please do yourself a favor and always check the licensing and make sure you’re attributing correctly. There are trolls out there who will sue you for hundreds of dollars, even for such non-crimes as using the incorrect version of Creative Commons. And if the image isn’t licensed for your use, don’t use it!)

I make it easy on myself and always use the same cover image for Razor Mountain chapters, and pictures of mountains for development journals. For all other posts, I just search for terms vaguely related to the content.

I always write my blog posts in OneNote, do an editing pass, and then copy/paste them into WordPress. I almost never publish a post immediately. Instead, I schedule them for 7:00am CST on a subsequent day—usually Monday, Wednesday or Friday.


My latest endeavor is to try to get a better understanding of how I’m using my writing time. Lately, I’ve been using ClickUp. I like it for charting “deadlines,” even if they’re entirely self-imposed, and laying out a schedule of things I intend to write.

And even though I’ve explicitly said in the past that I don’t want to end up tracking things in Microsoft Excel, I’ve been doing a little bit of tracking in Excel. I haven’t found a great way to roll up the time spent on different projects in ClickUp in a way I like. Excel makes it dead simple to make a few columns and track days, projects and half-hour increments. It’s all compact and easy to eyeball, and there’s always an easily searched website that will tell you how to translate a few columns into an interesting graph, even if Excel formulas make me feel a little dirty.

This tracking stuff is still in flux, and I expect it to change. In every other respect I am an old man, set in my ways. It’ll be interesting to check back in next year, and see if anything is different.

This post is already much longer than I planned, so I’ll end it here. Hopefully it was interesting to see how another writer works. If you’re an author who writes about your own process, I’d love to read about how you’re working. Leave a comment or a link to a post of your own.

New Year, New Look

Welcome to the new, slightly more spiffy Words Deferred!

Since I have a little end-of-year vacation time, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to update the site design. The old layout felt a little too “Geocities” for modern times, and I’ve been thinking about changing it for a while.

If you’re reading this in a subscription email or the WordPress Reader view where the content is stripped from the layout, you may not have noticed anything different. If you actually still visit the site, I hope you find it to be a much cleaner experience.

If anyone is curious, the old theme was Syntax, very slightly customized. The new theme, somewhat confusingly, is named Twenty Sixteen.

The Syntax theme didn’t have a sidebar, so I ended up throwing a jumbled mess of stuff onto the Words Deferred home page in somewhat random sequence. I suspect it didn’t provide the greatest first impression to new visitors. Of course, you hope that people won’t judge a book by its cover, but you also know that at least some amount of cover-book-judging is inevitable. Now, I’ve moved all the navigational content to the sidebar, freeing up the home page to be much more focused.

The one other big thing that annoyed me about the Syntax theme was the menu. It was weirdly hidden by default. I liked that it stayed out of the way of the main content, and was always accessible, but I missed having a static menu. The Twenty Sixteen theme has a static menu up-top, where it’s still out of the way of the content. It’s no longer accessible when you’re scrolled down the page, but I can live with that.

If you’re a reader who actually visits the site, please leave me a comment and let me know what you think about the changes. If you only read via email, WordPress Reader, RSS, etc., and this makes no difference to you, I’d be interested to hear about that too.


Last week I passed another little milestone.

Thanks to everyone for reading, especially my regulars.

One of the goals of this blog is an open writing process, and I include the inner workings of the blog itself in that. I’m not exactly an internet celebrity or SEO expert, but hopefully there’s some value to other bloggers in seeing what my numbers look like.

The progression of these view milestones is interesting to look at:

  • Sept. 2020 – Blog created
  • Nov. 2021 – 1000 views
  • Apr. 2022 – 2000 views
  • Dec. 2022 – 5000 views

As you can see, while starting from small numbers, the progression is more exponential than linear. It took 14 months to get enough readership to get a thousand views. The next thousand took only 6 months, and five thousand came 8 months after that.

A Little Traffic Analysis

Based on the traffic stats, I attribute most of my traffic to a fairly consistent posting schedule and the long tail of search results. Almost none of my traffic in the first year came from external search engines. It was driven almost entirely by regular readers and people who found the blog through the internal search and recommendations.

Once Google picked up some of my posts to rank on the first page of certain niche search terms, the bulk of my traffic started to come in from that. On a typical day, I see hits on my most recent 1-2 posts, hits on my top few posts in Google search, and one or two hits on random old posts. I assume these old posts come up in WordPress search and recommendations or in the “other posts like this” end-cap.

This shows why people chase that sweet, sweet SEO. Having posts that rank high in the Google results gives you a steady stream of traffic, and that traffic can be converted into regulars and get more visitors clicking on your other articles in the end-cap. I haven’t put much effort into SEO, so it typically comes as a surprise to me which articles end up ranking high enough in a niche search to drive traffic.

Smoothing Over Time

It’s worth noting that statistics like this “smooth out” as you look at longer time scales. If you’re a new blogger, please don’t drive yourself crazy looking at daily view counts and other statistics. Especially when your blog is small, there will be a lot of variation from day to day and week to week. Even on a monthly scale, my graphs jump up and down significantly.

This is why I have been doing my own State of the Blog posts every six months. I don’t find the statistics to be all that useful on time scales much smaller than that.

State of the Blog — Aug 2022

Dang y’all! Somehow it has been two years since I started this blog. It’s honestly hard to believe.

One of the key tenets of this blog is an open writing process. I’ve brought that to my serial novel, Razor Mountain, with my development journals, and I bring it to the blogging process with these “state of the blog” posts every six months or so.


  • Years blogging: 2
  • Total Posts: ~250
  • Total Followers: 87
  • Monthly Views: ~375 (average over last 3 months)

I do my best to not worry too much about visitors, views, and all the other bloggy statistics, but I do keep an eye on them. In the past six months, I really have nothing to complain about as far as the graphs and numbers. I don’t pay much attention to the totals. I’m small by most standards. All I really look for is growth, and the blog has been growing steadily. It took until this May to hit 2,000 total views, and a couple weeks ago I hit 3,000 total views.

One Post to Rule Them All?

One interesting statistic that has become apparent over the last few months is that I have a single post that has out-performed all the others, by a considerable margin.

Great Writing Can You Say Hero? is a post from about a year ago. I had intended to start a series of posts talking about some of my favorite pieces, but I’m distractable, and I’ve never written another of these posts. Views for this post have steadily increased over the past few months, to the point where now they account for about 50% of the views I get every single day!

It’s important to note that I did not intend or expect this. I just wrote a post, and hoped (as I always do) that it would be interesting for others. This particular post hit a search algorithm sweet spot.

You see, there is a steady flow of people looking for Junod’s story about Mr. Rogers, and not very many search results on Google. Because of this, my post shows up near the top of results for several similar searches. This traffic is almost entirely driven by Google.

This is a potent illustration of the power of search engines to drive traffic. This is why people spend so much effort chasing SEO. However, the million dollar question is whether this traffic is actually good for me. I just happen to be capturing views in search of something else. On the other hand, the more people who read the blog, the more likely that some of them will be interested and come back.

The next six months will be interesting, because I’m also seeing search engine-driven traffic on a couple other posts on a much smaller scale. We’ll see if these other posts start to grow in a similar way.

The Long Tail

Even setting aside the search engine traffic, I’ve now reached a point where the post of the day is usually not the primary driver of traffic. On days when I post something new, it is almost always out-performed by a random assortment of my past articles.

This is why so much advice for “content creators” boils down to “keep making a steady stream of new stuff.” On rare occasions, you’ll make an outlier that performs better than most of your other stuff, but you’ll also create a large body of work that collectively draws in a bunch of people over time.

Looking Back and Setting Goals

These six-month reviews are partly about looking back, and partly about re-evaluating what I’m trying to achieve.

Looking back, I feel like I’ve really hit my stride. I have a steady rhythm of alternating weeks: Razor Mountain episodes and a development journal one week, then two writing-related posts and a reblog the following week. Every once in a while I skip a post. I’m not a robot. And I no longer worry about maintaining a perfect schedule.

I usually have a backlog of ideas for posts. Sometimes I do a series on a topic, sometimes I do one-offs. I’ve become a lot more comfortable with off-the-cuff posts and less editing. I’ve also become a lot less stressed about throwing my work onto the internet where everyone can see it. (There will probably always be a little pang of stress about that, but I think that’s probably healthy.)

My goals right now are:

  • Finish Razor Mountain
  • Write a couple of short stories alongside the novel
  • Write more, and especially write more fiction
  • Think about what’s next for the blog after Razor Mountain

See You Next Time

That’s all I’ve got for this two-year blogoversary. Thanks for reading, and we’ll check back in six months.

Reblog: So You’ve Decided to Unfollow Me — Cory Doctorow

In today’s reblog, the insanely prolific author, blogger, tweeter, speaker, etc. Cory Doctorow gets a little misty-eyed for the days of yore, when the internet was all about finding the little corners where people liked the same things you liked and you all could collectively geek-out over it.

Doctorow is of the opinion that the rise of social media, cross-site user tracking and online advertising empires drew people away from many of those hidden corners of the internet and encouraged websites to cast the widest-possible nets, seeking sheer number of views over engaged communities.

Whether or not you believe that narrative, it does seem like we’ve lost some of that early internet magic. Doctorow is here to remind us that we don’t have to try to please everyone. We don’t have to chase those big, but barely-engaged viewer numbers. It’s better to build that little corner of the internet that’s all about the thing you love. It’s better to get together with a few people who also love that thing.

It’s hard to overstate how liberating the early years of internet publishing were. After a century of publishing driven by the needs of an audience, we could finally switch to a model driven by the interests of writers.

That meant that instead of trying to figure out what some “demographic” wanted to read about, we wrote what we wanted to read, and then waited for people who share our interests to show up and read and comment and write their own blogs and newsletters and whatnot.


In the golden years of internet publishing, the point was to find the weirdos who liked the same stuff as you. Freed from commercial imperatives, the focus of the blogosphere was primarily on using your work as a beacon to locate Your People, who were so diffuse and disorganized that there was no other way to find them.

That’s the dynamic behind the explosion of fandoms and fanfic, behind esoteric maker communities and weird collector rabbit-holes, behind conspiratorialism and fringe politics and the whole loompanic wonderment of it all.

Read the rest over on Cory Doctorow’s Medium site

State of the Blog – Feb 2022

It’s been six months again, and here we are at another “State of the Blog” post.

I write these partly for myself, and partly for other bloggers who are interested in what someone else is experiencing. Part of creating things for other people is about presenting an experience. Assuming you’re not completely cynical and opportunistic, a blog is going to be at least a little personal, but there’s a temptation to put the best version of yourself forward. Unfortunately, that often means that nobody wants to talk about their statistics or their experiences, unless those statistics and experiences paint them in a very positive light.

This blog is largely built around the idea of openly talking about the process of writing, the ups and downs and the unaltered details. The goal of these “State of the Blog” posts is to openly talk about the blog itself, and how I feel it’s going.


Six months ago, I gave these overarching goals. These all still apply today.

  • To hold myself accountable to a writing schedule
  • To develop an audience of readers
  • To provide something useful to other writers
  • To make connections with other writers

Blogging is the best tool I’ve found so far to keep myself writing on a regular basis. If I don’t write anything else, I am still writing 2-3 blog posts per week. In years past, I have often gone weeks or even months without writing, so this is very positive for me. That said, I still want to be writing more fiction than I am, and I need to figure out more strategies to motivate myself to do that.

Developing an audience is slow going. I think that’s partly because I’m not putting out fiction quickly or consistently, and partly just because it takes time and effort to catch eyeballs, and only a certain percentage of people are going to be interested. I’m continuing to see steady growth, so I’m not too worried about that, but certainly getting more good work out there wouldn’t hurt.

Providing something useful for other writers and making connections with them go hand in hand. Again, based on the statistics, it seems like more and more people are appreciating what I’m posting. I’ve also been working on making connections with other writers who blog regularly and have work that interests me. That’s a slow and tedious process of internet search-an-find, but it is rewarding to discover someone who posts great content, and even better if they like what I’m doing as well.

I have a couple short-term goals for the next six months:

  • Post Razor Mountain chapters more consistently and more frequently
  • Find more great writing blogs to follow


  • Years blogging: 1.5
  • Total Posts: ~165
  • Total Followers: 62 (and 9 on Twitter)
  • Monthly Views: ~175 (average over last 3 months)

I try not to put too much stock in statistics, but if I’m honest, it’s hard to not pay a little bit of attention. So I take my data points during these six month intervals. Since this is the third of those intervals, I can start to make some comparisons between those three samples.

The short takeaway is that everything is just about double what it was six months ago. In terms of raw growth, that’s still closer to exponential than linear. It’s slower than it was between the six month mark and the one year mark, but I don’t think that’s terribly relevant when dealing with small numbers. In general, if the lines continue to go up, that translates to more people finding and liking the site.

I crossed the 1,000 view mark in December ’21, after about 15 months of blogging. At the current rate, I’d expect to hit the next thousand by May ’22, five months later. Not huge numbers, but steady improvement.

“Engagement” feels like a gross web business buzzword, but what’s probably more important is that I’ve seen more engagement in likes and comments. Comments are still hard to come by, but that’s to be expected. From what I’ve seen, it’s not uncommon to see anywhere from 25:1 – 100:1 ratios of views to comments. It’s just a lot easier to get people to read what you’ve written than it is to get them to comment on it.

In the next six months, I’d obviously like to see numbers continue to grow, but my biggest indicator of success will be more comments and likes. Feedback is great. Dialogue is even better.


In the past six months, I’ve started doing Wednesday reblogs more frequently. Basically, any week where I don’t post Razor Mountain chapters, I’ll post a Wednesday reblog. I’ll be honest, part of this is that it’s low-effort. I love the blog, but I also limit the time I spend each week on the blog. Hopefully this is a good way to highlight something that I found interesting or useful for other writers, without taking too much time away from other projects.

So…yeah, let me know if you like the reblogs, or if they just clog your feed. I can adjust accordingly.

Razor Mountain

Six months ago, I was still outlining and doing pre-production work on Razor Mountain. Since then, I’ve finished outlining and done all of the book-adjacent tasks like writing the back cover and designing the front cover. I’ve posted five chapters. That’s progress.

I made quick progress initially, then slowed down around the holiday season. Thanks to some real-life factors, I ended up feeling overwhelmed by the schedule I was trying to maintain. I’m now in a more relaxed place, and thinking about trying to push chapters out with a little more frequency.

I do enjoy the cadence of putting out a chapter in 2-3 parts throughout a week, and following it up with a Friday Razor Mountain Development post to talk about the process of writing the chapter. I think it will be interesting to look back on those development journals when the book is done, to see how it has evolved since I first started outlining.

I’m continuing to post chapters to Wattpad and Tapas alongside the blog, but my audience on those platforms is just about nonexistent. It’s understandable since I haven’t put much effort into networking with other writers on those platforms, and I’m not in the more popular genres and styles that I see on their front pages. For now, I’ll keep posting. There’s no point worrying too much about promotion until you have something you really want to promote. At some point when I have more chapters posted (or maybe even the entire book) I’ll dig into those platforms and make a little more effort to draw some attention.

Next Stop: Two Years

I continue to have lots of ideas for stand-alone blog posts and series. I used to worry that I might run out of ideas for a blog, but having written for this long, I’m now confident that I won’t run out any time soon. I have one specific series in the works that I’m excited about—more on that in a week or two.

That’s all I have for now. See you again in six months, for the two-year anniversary of Words Deferred.

Reblog: The Memex Method — Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow is an opinionated activist, technologist, futurist, and insanely prolific writer of novels and short stories, essays, speeches and Twitter threads. He’s also been blogging for more than two decades. To say that he gets a lot done would be a gross understatement.

Interestingly, Doctorow suggests that blogging hasn’t taken away time from his other projects. He believes that the blog is just a commonplace book (or better yet, a memex) that’s made available to the public, giving the writer a natural incentive to be a little more organized. It’s a tool for kicking around thoughts and opinions, assembling and tending to them until they’re ready to become a story, an essay, a book. It’s an idea generator.

Like those family trip-logs, a web-log serves as more than an aide-memoire, a record that can be consulted at a later date. The very act of recording your actions and impressions is itself powerfully mnemonic, fixing the moment more durably in your memory so that it’s easier to recall in future, even if you never consult your notes.

The genius of the blog was not in the note-taking, it was in the publishing. The act of making your log-file public requires a rigor that keeping personal notes does not. Writing for a notional audience — particularly an audience of strangers — demands a comprehensive account that I rarely muster when I’m taking notes for myself. I am much better at kidding myself my ability to interpret my notes at a later date than I am at convincing myself that anyone else will be able to make heads or tails of them.

Writing for an audience keeps me honest.

Read the rest over at Cory Doctorow’s Medium page…